Dissidents Cemetery

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Street view of the Cemetery of Dissidents of Valparaíso, Chile.

The Cemetery of Dissidents is a cemetery located on the Panteón hill, in front of the Cemetery nº 1 and at one side of the old city jail (now a cultural center) in Valparaíso, Chile.

It was created in 1825 to hold the remains of the British and Europeans residents, that by their Protestant faith differed from the official religion of the State, represented by the Catholic Church.[1][2]

In the year 1800 immigrants to Valparaíso who were not Catholics could not be buried in a Catholic cemetery; they were buried on the Playa Ancha hill, in the fort of the Cordillera hill, or just thrown into the sea. In 1823 British consul George Seymour, with the aid of mayor Robert Simpson, bought some land at one side of the city jail, to build a special cemetery for "dissidents" i.e. those not of the Catholic faith.[3]

The cemetery is divided into eight sections and it has nearly 800 graves. Inside there is a memorial dedicated to the people that died in the capture of the U.S. frigate Essex in 1814 by the English ships Cherub and Phoebe.

There is also a monument dedicated to the Reverend David Trumbull, founder of the Presbyterian Church of the city.[3]

In 1883 laws abolished religious discrimination in municipal cemeteries. Until that year, the Cemetery of Dissidents also buried non-Catholics who had died in other cities such as Santiago and La Serena.[4]

In the 1906 earthquake all the cemeteries were damaged [5]

The 2011 renovation of the cemetery (due to damage from the 2010 Chile earthquake), included a memorial "Plaza of the immigrant".[4] [6]


  1. ^ "CEMENTERIO DISIDENTES (In Spanish". Patrimonio. Valpariso Chile.com. Retrieved 10 April 2013. 
  2. ^ Similar cemeteries named the same occurred in Buenos Aires, in Argentina at the same time Montes-Bradley, Saul M (2003), Index to the records of the 1st Cemetery of Dissidents at Socorro Street and register no. 1 of the 2nd Cemetery of Dissidents at Victoria Street in Buenos Aires, 1821-1855, S.M. Montes-Bradley, retrieved 28 November 2014 
  3. ^ a b "A place where death comes alive (in Spanish)". Cementerio de Disidentes. Valpariso Mercury (16 January 2002). Retrieved 10 April 2013. 
  4. ^ a b Cisternas, Hernán. "Cementerio de Disidentes abrirá como memorial de los inmigrantes". El Mercurio (subscription required). Retrieved 10 April 2013. 
  5. ^ "EARTHQUAKE AT VALPARAISO.". The Capricornian. 32, (50). Queensland, Australia. 15 December 1906. p. 32. Retrieved 30 November 2016 – via National Library of Australia. 
  6. ^ Galarce, Jonathan. "End of first stage of renovation of Dissenters Cemetery (In Spanish)". Radio Bío-Bío (March 3, 2011). Retrieved 10 April 2013. 

Coordinates: 33°2′42.94″S 71°37′30.14″W / 33.0452611°S 71.6250389°W / -33.0452611; -71.6250389